By Nina Wu
Ho! Ho! Ho!
Santa is on his way here, and he's using solar energy to spread Holiday cheer. Check out the solar-powered Santa exhibit at this year's 2011 Honolulu City Lights.
The display, which showcases an eight-foot diorama of Santa's workshop and village built by the LEGO Enthusiasts Association of Hawaii, along with a front panel saying "Santa Goes Solar" and candy cane posts, will be on the lawn next to Honolulu Hale as part of city lights from Dec. 3 to Dec. 31.
Two Christmas trees next to the display will be lit with a dazzling array of high-tech LED lights engineered by members of UH's Solar Decathlon Team Hawaii and decorated with recycled incandescent bulb ornaments made by students islandwide. Sunetric designed a custom, state-of-the-art solar photovoltaic canopy to power the entire display.
The people in the LEGO town are hustling and bustling, getting ready for Christmas (bringing trees home on a horse-drawn carriage, for instance). The LEGO Miniland residents, of course, value a "clean energy lifestyle" and have solar panels on their businesses and homes (as you can see in the photo to the right).
Hawaii Energy and Wal-Mart Hawaii stores offered financial support to make the project possible.